Former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo blasted the Biden administration’s willingness to restart nuclear talks with Iran, fearing they could lead to sanctions relief and concessions — but little substantive change in the country’s nuclear policy.
“The ayatollah understands only strength. I led a response to the Iranian threat that protected the American people from its terror and supported the Jewish state of Israel,” Pompeo told the Washington Free Beacon on Thursday. “Adopting the European Union model of accommodation will guarantee Iran a path to a nuclear arsenal.”
Pompeo’s remarks came the same day the State Department said it would welcome an invitation to restore diplomacy with Iran.
In 2018, the Trump administration pulled out of the deal three years after it was brokered by the Obama administration with Britain, France, Germany Russia, China and the European Union. The accord reduced sanctions against Iran in exchange for the country reducing its stockpile of enriched uranium needed to fuel nuclear weapons.
Since the US’s withdrawal, Iran has admitted it’s breached the 2015 deal by using advanced uranium-enriching centrifuges in an underground plant.
Pompeo credited the Trump administration’s steadfastness, saying that European nations “wanted to appease the Iranian theocracy for my entire time as secretary of state.”
“We refused,” he said.
Earlier this week, Pompeo said America needs to show strength when it comes to dealing with Iran.
“When the Iranians sense weakness, they’ll attack,” Pompeo said on “Fox News @ Night.” “What we did is that when they came after an American, we made this very clear: Whether they attacked an American through a proxy force in Iraq, whether they attacked an American through Hezbollah in Syria, wherever it was, wherever Iran was responsible, we were going to hold the Iranians accountable. That’s the kind of strength that built the deterrence model that we had with respect to Iran. I hope that this current administration won’t give up on that.”